A Simi Valley man pleaded guilty today to a federal narcotics charge of distributing heroin and cocaine that resulted in death, while admitting in court that he distributed drugs that killed two people and nearly killed two others who overdosed.
David Ryan Tejera, 23, pleaded guilty to the federal charge pursuant to a plea agreement that calls for him to serve nearly 22 years in prison.
Appearing today before United States District Judge A. Howard Matz, Tejera pleaded guilty to a charge stemming from a May 2010 incident in which he provided heroin and cocaine to a Simi Valley man who died from an overdose after Tejera injected him three times – twice with heroin and once with a heroin-cocaine cocktail.
During today’s hearing, Tejera also admitted that he distributed heroin to a Thousand Oaks man who died of an overdose of the drug in October 2009. Tejera further admitted that in March and May of 2010 he distributed heroin that resulted in serious bodily injury to two people who suffered overdoses.
Tejera also admitted in court today that he told detectives with the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department that he was one of the largest heroin dealers in Ventura County and that he had been “slinging a lot in Thousand Oaks.” Tejera further acknowledged that he told the detectives that he preferred “slamming” (quickly injecting) heroin and that “everyone asks me to shoot them up and it always comes back to haunt me.”
Judge Matz conditionally accepted Tejera’s guilty plea and scheduled a sentencing hearing for January 9, 2012. Judge Matz said he scheduled the hearing for next year because the “stakes are high” and the court will have to determine whether to impose the 262-month prison term called for in the plea agreement. In the event that Judge Matz decides not to impose the agreed-upon sentence, Tejera will be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea and the case would move toward a trial. Furthermore, if Judge Matz does not impose the sentence of 262 months, Tejera may be charged with additional criminal offenses by the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office.
The case was investigated by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department, which received substantial assistance from the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office and the Drug Enforcement Administration.